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Genetic Diversity and Population Structure of Seven Tibet Yak Ecotype Populations using Microsatellite Markers

Genetic Diversity and Population Structure of Seven Tibet Yak Ecotype Populations using Microsatellite Markers

Yan-Bin Zhu1, Wang-Dui Basang1, Zhan-Dui Pingcuo1, Yang-Ji Cidan1, Sang Luo1, Dun-Zhu Luosang1, Yang-La Dawa1 and Guang-Xin E2,3,* 

1Institute of Animal Husbandryand Veterinary Medicine, Tibet Academy of Agriculture and Animal Husandry Science, Lhasa, 850009, China
2State Key Laboratory of Barley and Yak Germplasm Resources and Genetic Improvement (Tibet Academy of Agricultural and Animal Husbandry Sciences (TAAAS)), Lhasa, 850002, China
3Chongqing Key Laboratory of Forage & Herbivore, Chongqing Engineering Research Centre for Herbivores Resource Protection and Utilization, College of Animal Science and Technology, Southwest University, Chongqing, China

Yan-Bin Zhu and Wang-Dui Basang contributed equally to this article. 

*  Corresponding author:



The aim of the present study was to perform genetic diversity and population structure estimation on 382 individuals from seven Chinese Tibetan ecotype yak population using twenty-one microsatellites. The results revealed that the HO ranged from 0.4854±0.0194 in NNV to 0.6086±0.0267 in YRY, and the NA ranged from 3.86±1.98 in XMY to 6.05±3.37 in NNV. The least number of markers which deviated from Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium within the population was W, and largest number of deviations was in the NNV population. Consistent of phylogenetic relationships between the seven populations was identified by Phylogenetic N-J network (Reynold’s genetic distance), FST and Principal components factor (PCA) analysis. These analyses inferred that the population cluster data was not only consistent with the populations’ geographic habits but could also be influenced by artificial selection and feeding style. Lastly, two credible genetic backgrounds were identified from the yak populations in this study using STRUCTURE software, which corresponded to previous knowledge about different molecular genetic markers. Therefore, unexpectedly, our study indicated that the diversity of some of the populations was decreased, leaving us to improve and refine our conversional strategy. In addition, this resulted in a greater understanding of human yak phylogenetic differentiation as well as providing data support for understanding the evolution and migration of yak population in future studies.

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Pakistan Journal of Zoology


Vol. 54, Iss. 4, Pages 1501-2001


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